It has happened again. Like clockwork. Lenovo, the company that owns Motorola Mobility for all intents and purposes, has pulled the plug on yet another Moto E phone — in fact a couple of Moto E phones to be precise — so much so that it isn’t even surprising anymore. The Moto E4 and the Moto E4 Plus, launched in India in July 2017, will not be getting an Android Oreo update, the company has confirmed on its official blog. To recall, last year’s Moto E3 Power was subject to similar fate when Lenovo/Motorola left it hanging with Android Marshmallow for the rest of its life, just one month after launching it.
The Moto E4, E4 Plus which come with a very mediocre set of hardware inside, were banking a lot on nostalgia to attract buyers — the first Moto E was after all revolutionary for its time — who clearly had (have) far better options now in the likes of the Xiaomi Redmi 4 , and the Redmi Note 4. In fact, it’s safe to say that Xiaomi enjoys an upper hand, and a dominating one at that, when it comes to phones under Rs 10,000 in the current scheme of things. Lenovo/Motorola, however, holds an edge in the fact that all Moto phones run an almost one hundred per cent stock, unadulterated version of Android software with a promise of guaranteed timely updates. While the same may be true about Lenovo’s higher-priced phones like the Moto Z and Moto Z Play, their Moto phones under Rs 10,000 unfortunately haven’t been as lucky.
“Sweet just got even sweeter with the new Android OS update that gives you faster speeds, longer battery life, split-screen capabilities, smart text selection, improved notifications, autofill framework for your trickiest of passwords, and of course, the all new Google Play Protect, helping to ensure none of your apps become compromised,” according to the company’s official blog. Sadly, all this won’t be coming to the Moto E4, E4 Plus which were launched only two months ago, in India. Moreover, even the Moto C and the Moto C Plus have failed to make the cut, essentially meaning that all Moto phones under Rs 10,000 are quite literally dead way sooner than one could imagine. All these phones will be stuck with Android Nougat for the rest of their lives, when they should have, at least, got one major update in Android Oreo. Because that’s really the norm with stock Android from Google, if we keep hardware constraints out of the equation.
Last year’s Moto E3 Power was subject to similar fate when Lenovo/Motorola left it hanging with Android Marshmallow for the rest of its life, just one month after launching it
Google’s policy is to update a phone for 2 years, 3 for security updates and they are considered to be the best. Moto phones share a similar philosophy, but, it seems, the same isn’t true about Moto phones that cost below Rs 10,000 making the whole deal of Lenovo/Motorola overcrowding the market with plethora of options and then failing to update them for even one cycle questionable, to say the least. You can, of course, blame MediaTek’s entry-level chipset — primarily the MT6737 — for their woes, but, that doesn’t explain why the company behind all of these phones keeps justifying their pitch for MediaTek processors, when at the end of the day it’s all about cost-cutting. Last year’s Moto E3 Power, was notably, the first Moto phone to ship with a MediaTek processor. Well until that happened, all Moto phones came with a Qualcomm-based chip. Maybe things would have been better for the Moto E4, E4 Plus, C and C Plus, had Lenovo/Motorola based these phones on a Qualcomm processor. You never know.
I’ve said this a million times and I’ll say this again: life was much simpler when there was one Moto X, one Moto G and just one Moto E. In 2017, we have four Moto Gs, two Moto Es and two Moto Zs. There’s also a fourth category, of the Moto C, that adds two more phones into the equation. That’s a lot of phones and while some of them are really, really good, most of them are mere incremental upgrades fighting among each other for the top spot. The effect is more pronounced among the Moto phones that cost Rs 20,000 and below. But while the recently launched Moto G5S and Moto G5S Plus (also the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus) will be updated to Oreo, the once iconic Moto E line-up, it seems, isn’t all that iconic any more.
For your quick reference, here are all the Moto phones eligible for the Android Oreo upgrade:
-Moto Z Droid
-Moto Z Force Droid
-Moto Z Play
-Moto Z Play Droid
-Moto Z2 Force Edition